The question comes up often about pleaters, spacing between Rows and how smocking plates are designed on a particular pleater.
Here is the visual aide to remember that there IS a difference between the 16R (row) pleater and the 24R (row) pleater.
On the left is the Read 16R pleater, on the right a 24R Amanda Jane pleater.
If you look closely, at the RED pins, these are both on R8. There is a slight difference.
It does not matter the BRAND of the pleater. I have found this spacing to be true among all of the pleaters I have experienced (and I think I have seen them all after 35 years of smocking and teaching.) The 16R pleaters are slightly closer together than the 24R pleaters.
Here is a closer picture. R8, not too much of a difference. R16, the Rows are off by a full space.
WHY? Does this matter? In geometric smocking it isn't a big deal. Your eye and hand will compensate for the spacing. HOWEVER, if you are trying to smock a 5, 6, or 7 step trellis in the spacing between two Rows, it can get pretty stuffy in there on a 16R pleater.
This is where the fullness of the floss might come into play. That is a whole 'nuther topic about brand, treatment of threads etc.
PICTURE SMOCKING(PS): or stacking cables is a different story. Some smocking plates are designed using a 16R pleater and some using a 24R pleater. (Again: old plates used 3 strands of floss and new plates use 4 strands of floss.)
In PS, the vertical spacing can be an issue. You might want to begin smocking at the middle of the character and work your way up and down to make sure the character is centered on the Rows.
The other concern is some designers place 3 passes of smocking between the Rows while others place 4 passes of stacked cables.
You will learn to compensate by starting in the middle of the character and ignoring the Row spacing as necessary.
The final thing to consider is spacing for a garment. Some patterns allow for 8R of smocking for an insert. However is that 8R on a 16R pleater or 8R on a 24R pleater? THIS can effect the way your outer piece fits with the lining.
EDIT to add: This is a portion of a smocking plate by Little Memories (the BEST plates on the market!) Make certain your characters are centered between the Rows, no matter what type of pleater you own. By starting at the MIDDLE of the design you can be assured it will be centered. Again, this means you need to disregard the Row markings on the plate. Your smocking might be fuller. Your pleater might not have as much space as the designer's pleater. THIS corrects most problems in spacing!
Another place this can run into trouble is making a yoke dress, smocking all the way to the side seam. The yoke bottom SHOULD match with the bottom of the smocking. If it doesn't, you might need to alter the bottom of the yoke by making it a tad shorter or longer to look right.
Details make the difference! This is a classic example of why some things don't turn out exactly as the picture. Just know you can make a few minor adjustments to your smocking or garment construction to fix it!